Date of Award

Summer 8-24-2020

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Program of Study

Communication - Corporate Communication

Language

English

First Advisor

Stuart Davis

Second Advisor

Peter Horowitz

Abstract

The goal of the research conducted here is to see the candid ways in which the American people react to the existence of multiracial couples and families. As these families are becoming more commonplace within the population and large companies such as Nestlé, Toyota, Expedia, Progressive, and General Mills have taken note of this. Instead of portraying the typical nuclear family as a backdrop for their products, companies are now demonstrating how their products are part of the everyday life of any and every American by depicting unions amongst white, black, Hispanic, and Asian partners. This normalization is due to the increase of such relationships throughout the last seven decades of the United States’ history and is a pattern that is only going to become more prominent. Beginning with the landmark Supreme Court case of Loving. V. Virginia in 1967, the multiracial couple and family as a legitimate union was shown as a true representation of a normal American household that operated like any other (Clark, 2017). Companies are portraying themselves as forward-thinking amongst their longtime challengers in order to secure the patronage of the individuals they show using and purchasing their products or services. In this thesis I aim to see how the general American public views multiracial relationships and families in addition to obtaining the opinions of subjects on the same, as well as their own reception of their relationships’ representation through advertisements. I will be doing this through collecting the statistics of the likelihood of certain multiracial relationships, the reasons as to why they are, and responses collected by interview participants that are in or have been in a multiracial relationship. This rhetoric is necessary and must be developed further 3 amongst corporations so that those who they represent know that they are more than a momentary marketing gimmick.

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